Hello and welcome to my moth Blog. I now reside in a small village in East Cambridgeshire called Fordham. My Blog's aim is to promote and encourage others to participate in the wonderful hobby that is Moth-trapping.
Moth records are vital for building a picture of our ecosystem around us, as they really are the bottom of the food chain. They are an excellent early indicator of how healthy a habitat is. I openly encourage people to share their findings via social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter & Instagram.
So why do we do it? well for some people it is to get an insight into the world of Moths, for others it is to build a list of species much like 'Twitching' in the Bird world. The reason I do it....you just never know what you might find when you open up that trap! I hope to show what different species inhabit Cambridgeshire and neighbouring counties.
On this Blog you will find up-to-date records and pictures.
I run a trap regularly in my garden and also enjoy doing field trips to various localities over several different counties.
Please also check out the links in the sidebar to the right for other people's Blogs and informative Websites.
Thanks for looking and happy Mothing!


NFY = New Species For The Year
NFG = New Species For The Garden
NEW! = New Species For My Records

Any Species highlighted in RED signifies a totally new species for my records.

If you have any questions or enquiries then please feel free to email me
Contact Email : bensale@rocketmail.com

My Latest Notables and Rarities

Saturday 20 September 2014

Bovingdon Brickworks - Hemel Hempstead - Field Trip - 18/09/14

I enjoyed a trip over to Hemel Hempstead once again and I was joined by David, Roger and Steve.

We decided to trap at Bovingdon Brickworks in the small village of Bovingdon to the South-West of Hemel Hempstead and owned by the Boxmoor Trust.
This site is very important for wildlife and moths are no exception! The unimproved grassland and mixed woodland intersecting the previously excavated pits offers a unique habitat and trapping experience.

We thought about positioning the traps in an area that we had not run the traps before, and so we went about setting up all four traps in a crossroads position so they were all out of site of each other.

The weather was absolutely perfect minus some cloud cover but with a minimum temperature of a sweltering 16 degrees all night, it was still 23 whilst we were arriving and there was no moon to contend with.

It did take a while after dark for moths to start turning up, all four of the traps got inundated with Crane-flies and 3 of the traps had a small Hornet presence as well.
First moths in were Brimstones, Square-spot Rustics and Lunar Underwings then some better species started coming in, Pink-barred Sallows, Sallows and Dusky Thorns.

Throughout the night we were so surprised at how late some species were still flying, and some fresh broods in the mix as well, species such as Light Emerald, Oak Hook-tip, Green Carpet, Small Phoenix, Straw Dot and Pretty Chalk Carpet and then after seeing these I commented 'We will get an Elephant Hawk-moth next!' and blow me down, on the egg tray of one of the traps was a mint example of a female.

The Macro's weren't the only highlights, the Micro's had a very good innings indeed with nearly as many species including five species of Acleris and four species of Ypsolopha making it 9 already. Late ones were also amongst these with Cochylimorpha straminea, Crambus pascuella, Pyrausta aurata and even more shocking was Pseudargyrotoza conwagana and Acleris forsskaleana.

Probably the rarest moth of the night was a fresh example of Pandemis cinnamomeana, a local moth in most parts of the Country where it is found.
Best moth for me was a Plume that Roger potted up from David's trap, it was confirmed after a little bit of scrutiny that it was indeed a Platyptilia gonodactyla, a completely new Plume for all of us, despite it listed as common in the books, but then our County database tells a different story with one record from 1900 to 2005! Though I am sure someone has seen one from then until now.

Catch below in no particular order.

More pictures to come, when it stops raining!

Catch Report - 18/09/14 - Bovingdon Brickworks - Hemel Hempstead - 1x 125w MV Robinson Trap, 1x 160w MBT Robinson Trap, 1x 40w Lucent Suitcase Trap & 1x 80w Actinic?26w CFL Suitcase Trap.

40 Macros & 32 Micros

Macro Moths

10x Square-spot Rustic
3x Pink-barred Sallow
5x Lunar Underwing
40+ Brimstone Moth
2x Brindled Green
4x Snout
5x Light Emerald
9x Sallow
3x Lesser Yellow Underwing
3x Flame Shoulder
4x Oak Hook-tip
6x Common Marbled Carpet
10x Dusky Thorn
6x Copper Underwing
1x Svensson's Copper Underwing
5x Large Yellow Underwing
4x Common Wainscot
1x Rosy Rustic
1x Beaded Chestnut
1x Maiden's Blush
1x Pretty Chalk Carpet
2x Barred Sallow
1x Angle Shades
1x Southern Wainscot
1x Feathered Gothic
1x Burnished Brass
1x Small Square-spot
2x Willow Beauty
1x Brown-spot Pinion
3x Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing
2x Small Blood-vein
2x Green Carpet
2x Suttle-shaped Dart
1x Turnip Moth
2x Straw Dot
1x Small Phoenix
2x Red-green Carpet
5x Centre-barred Sallow
2x Grey-pine Carpet
1x Elephant Hawk-moth

Micro Moth

1x Platyptilia gonodactyla [NEW!]
2x Archips podana
2x Epinotia ramella
2x Acleris rhombana
2x Acleris emargana
2x Acleris variegana
1x Acleris forsskaleana
1x Monopis laevigella
1x Cochylimorpha straminea
1x Carcina quercana
1x Crambus pascuella
10+ Epinotia nisella
1x Pandemis cinnamomeana
2x Pyrausta aurata
2x Plutella xylostella
1x Elachista sp
1x Phyllonorycter harrisella
2x Phyllonorycter messaniella
1x Cydia pomonella
1x Blastobasis adustella
2x Celypha lacunana
1x Elophila nymphaeata
2x Agonopterix arenella
1x Ypsolopha sequella
1x Ypsolopha parenthesella
1x Ypsolopha sylvella
1x Ypsolopha scabrella
8x Eudonia pallida
1x Eudonia angustea
2x Epiphyas postvittana
2x Cameraria ohridella
1x Pseudargyrotoza conwagana

Cochylimorpha straminea

Elephant Hawk-moth

Eudonia pallida

Platyptilia gonodactyla


  1. Great to hear about your Brickworks catch, Ben. Rather jealous of that superb Elephant Hawk moth ;o). I have been hoping to find one of these there all summer! Plenty of willowherb on the site so I shall just have to look for caterpillars now, lol.

  2. Thanks Lucy, it was well worth the effort and we didn't finish late either (as it is dark so quick now) so I was home by 1.30am! Good luck finding the caterpillars, they should be in their final instar by now though I have read that they might have already pupated by now?